Friday, April 21, 2017

RPG Love Will Find A Way!

I have a legitimate problem. One that requires an immense amount of thinking, calculations, and queries among friends. And I'm sure some of you have faced the same concerns with other RPG's. This one has been tough. In the dozens of hours I have placed into this game on random weeknights when insomnia has kicked in, this will probably be my most difficult decision yet.

Who do I bang in Mass Effect: Andromeda?

This is a real issue for multiple reasons:

1 - Time. In that I don't have a lot of it to go through several playthroughs of the game to see how interactions and scene changes with Ryder, the primary protagonist. I'm hovering at that 50 hour mark and 64-67% completion. I have finished every side quest so far and all that's left is the priority mission - until more side quests appear. I'm estimating a 70 hour game when all is said and done. It's not possible for me to run through this a second time and expect it to go faster. This is my one shot with a romance. I can't mess it up.

2 -All of the ship companions are pretty cool in their own way. While I have concerns about the lack of one-on-one dialogue options, the companions on this journey have been top. Peebee, the spunky Asari rogue, has grown on me. I found her mildly annoying at first, but now her aloof attitude is more endearing (once I learned pieces of her past.) The hard-nose Turian, Vetra, is self-conscious and pragmatic. She's like me in more ways then I should probably admit. Gil is Gil. He's unintentionally flirtatious and a passionate ass about his work. I appreciate the rough edges of Liam, who's trying to determine what he wants out of life. He isn't certain about his choices and he's constantly growing, mentally and emotionally. And then there's Jaal, who's the brilliant combo of Garrus (Mass Effect) and Alistair (Dragon Age). Which makes him a deliciously cute Jaalapeno. The characters that I enjoyed from the start are now in a contest against the others that I have grown to adore.

3 - I like the human characters. This is Mass Effect. The goal is to bang aliens. At least, it's one of the more important goals. And yet the human options are equally stellar. I think it has to do with the accents. The men all have some suave, non-American accents to accompany their dialogue. It's difficult to overlook such an important aspect. Accents are a thing. And it's hot.

4 - I don't know how much or how little of a romance I'm getting out of this. As is the case with any game you play the first time through, you don't know what the results will be until they happen. BioWare has made it known that romances in Andromeda aren't all about getting someone in the sack. Some of them are more emotional or intellectual. There are some characters that want to pursue a relationship but will give you the option to abstain from doing the giggity entirely. I don't want my Ryder to be the person that pushes an NPC for something they may not want. It's cool if you don't want nookie, but I can't determine that vibe right now from the characters - not until I commit to a relationship.

5 - How do I know there isn't another charming NPC around the corner? I've stumbled onto two so far. One that you can have a fling with and the other provides a solid relationship. Both are quirky in their own ways. But are there more? Would locking myself in to one partner on the ship prevent me from finding a new, possibly more meaningful relationship outside of my bubble?

6 - I don't want to feel locked in if I'm ready to bail. My biggest "well, crap" moment in Mass Effect was when Kaidan dropped the bomb on my femShep and expressed that he had feelings for her. The almost kiss, showing up to her room before Ilos, the whole 9's. And it was not what I wanted. I was being polite. I didn't spend much time with the character when I played as broShep. So I talked to him and learned more about Kaidan's past. Kind of an interesting story. I didn't realize in doing so it triggered every algorithm that caused Kaidan to show up in my crib, to get some lovin'. I turned him down. I wanted an emotional-free ride for game 1. Yet in game 2, it's listed that we were in a relationship. Ugh. By game 3, when he re-expressed his feelings for me and mentioned that he could look past Garrus and I hooking up, I felt like I was Ross Geller from 'Friends.' Dude, we never were together. Stop it. I don't want this to happen again, and I need my Andromeda romance to be fully aware that breaking up is an option.

What's a gamer to do when she wants to bang all the aliens and experience a digital relationship of merit?

Update 4/24/17: I chose the Jaalapeno, and lost 12% of my game completion because of it!


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